[REVIEW] Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun

English Title: Monthly Girls' Nozaki-kun
Studio: Dogakobo
Genre: shoujo, romance, school, comedy
Episodes: 12
Anime Director: Yamazaki Mitsue (Hakkenden: Touhou Hakken Ibun)
Adaptation: manga

Sakura Chiyo confesses her feelings to her schoolmate Nozaki. Due to a misunderstanding, Nozaki thinks Sakura is just a fan. She then discovers Nozaki's other identity; a shoujo manga artist. As she gets closer to Nozaki, she befriends Nozaki's quirky acquaintances who assist him and serve as inspirations for his manga.

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Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is a fun romance-comedy anime that really had me laughing a lot of times. It generally lacks on the romance department but had it gooda at the comedy side of the story.

The Story. The plot really gives off a very romance-y feeling to the anime and the first and final episodes do that. The first episode started off really beautiful with that confession-atmosphere and suddenly breaking into comedy. The final episode, on the other hand, was slow and very focused on showing the romance between Sakura and Nozaki (well mostly Sakura, actually).

Each episode felt like a comedy anime with romance on the side. Many episodes even felt like a 4-koma manga which kind of disappoints me because it means that there aren't many interesting moments in the story other than the comedy. In the good side though, the comedy doesn't seem to be that repetitive or exhausting unlike comedy-centered anime (or real 4-koma based anime).

The Characters. Sakura Chiyo is an average girl who's pretty good in art, specifically watercolor. She's very energetic and in a sense, others can probably relate to her in terms of trying to be close to the guy she likes. It's pretty much something for you girls. Definitely that. Nozaki Umetarou, on the other hand, is a shoujo manga artist writing under a pen name. He's got a straight face and is very dense. Oh you know ultra-dense characters, they are funny in their own little way by just having that confused look or confused punch-lines/answers.

Sakura and Nozaki balance each other out. Sakura is the energetic one while Nozaki is the passive one. Sakura have those really cute my-crush-isn't-noticing-me moments while Nozaki have those I-have-to-capture-this-moment-for-my-manga manga. It's really funny.

The secondary characters are also very fun although I'm not really a fan of some of them. Mikoshiba Mikoto is one of my favorites. Voiced by Okamoto Nobuhiko, how can you resist this guy? But sometimes, I just get so used to his jokes, it doesn't work out to me anymore by the end of the series. There were secondary character romances like Kashima x Hori and Seo x Wakamatsu. Funny at times but as every other jokes out there, I get tired at times. I'm not a fan of Kashima (since she's the girl character who acts out as a guy) but seeing her try to be noticed by Hori was quite funny.

Art and Animation. Produced by Dogakobo. A production company I feel really stand out for slice of life anime, comedy slice of life series to be specific. The art is really good especially the reaction faces of characters (specifically Sakura's although there are times that they seem reused). The manga pages were also pretty good. Reminded me of Bakuman at times especially that stories were told in the manga art.

Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun is an anime about a girl who likes a really dense guy. She's an average girl with good artistic skills. He's a shoujo manga artist. It's a decent anime with no particular goal.

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Recommended to: (1) romance-comedy fans with more focus on comedy, (2) really funny characters but with repetitive Jokes, (3) fans of WORKING!! and Servant x Service, (4) 4-koma adaptation fans

Not for: (1) non-slice of life fans, (2) story-centered series fans,

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